• Important Dates -->
  • 4/20: United Spring Fling
  • 4/27-5/4: RRPA's 'Frozen'
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  • 5/1: Senior Sports Signing
  • 5/3: Decision Day & Military Signing Day
  • 5/9: 'May I Serve' Day
The Student News Site of Rock Ridge High School


The Student News Site of Rock Ridge High School


The Student News Site of Rock Ridge High School


Senior Night Sparks Phoenix Win Over Atoms

At the last home game of the season, set to honor the Class of 2024 marching band members, cheerleaders, and football players for senior night, the Phoenix football team had an electric victory over the Annandale Atoms with a final score of 27-13.
Danielle Kimpson Kaley
A four-year member of the program, senior Austin Fisher searches for an opening in hopes of securing a crucial first down for the Phoenix. An elite receiver and linebacker, Fisher has consistently made an impact not only on offense and defense, but also off the field.

Three times the seniors, three times the tears, and three times the cheers.

On Friday Nov. 3, the Phoenix took on the visiting Annandale Atoms for their senior night and last home football game of the season. However, it wasn’t just those who have dedicated their time and talents to the football program who were honored. Prior to the start of the game, all senior marching band members, cheerleaders, football players, and managers walked out onto the field with their friends and family to be celebrated by both the administration and their respective mentors.  The line of seniors and their loved ones spanned more than half the length of the field as they posed for pictures before the game began.

After the starting kickoff, the Phoenix attempted to gain some yardage through several run and pass plays, only to be met with heavy resistance from the Atoms. Following a failed Phoenix fourth down conversion attempt, the Atoms gained possession of the ball from the previous mark and eventually took it to the endzone for a touchdown, ending the first quarter with the Phoenix down 7-0. 

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Back on the field for the second quarter, the Phoenix returned with one goal in mind: score. This revamped motivation paved the way for results, as several successful run plays put the Phoenix just within reach of the endzone. The Phoenix knew they had to deliver as they launched the ball to senior Darien ‘DJ’ Ferrell, who caught it for the touchdown. Combined with the one point from the field goal kick, the Phoenix finished the first half tied 7-7 with the Atoms, putting them in a much better position going into halftime. 

As the marching band wrapped up their last home performance this year, the Phoenix football team knew they had to secure the lead. Beginning the third quarter with an explosive start of successful down conversions, Phoenix quarterback sophomore Xavier Smith ended the streak right, running the ball in for a touchdown and putting the Phoenix up 14-7. After triumphantly acquiring the lead, the Phoenix consistently pushed back the Atoms, who were quickly losing steam. This advancement only continued in the final minutes of the quarter, as junior Julian Ogletree scored the third Phoenix touchdown of the night, ending the third quarter with the Phoenix holding a commanding lead of 21-7.

Keeping the rhythm going to start the fourth quarter, Ogletree scored his second touchdown of the night early on, putting the Phoenix up 27-7.  On the defensive side, the Phoenix continued to thwart the Atoms offensive plans with some key tackles from senior Austin Fisher preventing their progress. In the final seconds of the game with a last-ditch effort, the Atoms scored, raising their score to 13.  Nevertheless, the Phoenix still concluded the game with a winning score of 27-13, as players, coaches, and students all celebrated the momentous end to the seniors’ fall high school chapter.

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About the Contributors
Tanishka Enugu
Tanishka Enugu, Editor In Chief
Tanishka Enugu is a senior and this is her fourth year on The Blaze staff! A passionate writer who appreciates the community the newspaper brings, she loves being able to represent the student body through the paper. Tanishka is also a huge history buff who strives to engage in all things related to the subject through her role as president of both the Rho Kappa National Social Studies Honor Society, and the Academic Team here at the Rock. Formerly the sports section editor, she is also a four year member of the track and field team, and loves to watch and discuss all things hockey. Similar to some of her favorite pieces to write, she enjoys indulging in pop culture, good books, and even better TV shows during her free time.
Danielle Kimpson Kaley
Danielle Kimpson Kaley, Staff Writer
Danielle is a sophomore and this is her first year on staff. In her free time, she loves sleeping whenever she gets the chance. She also watches anime and recently finished “Chainsaw Man,” and enjoys playing the guitar, which she has been doing for six years. She enjoys all genres of music, except country, and her favorite album is “HOPE” by NF. While her favorites change a lot, they have a very similar vibe. Danielle's mom is the reason she joined the newspaper. When her mom found out about “The Blaze,” she was so excited and encouraged Danielle to join the paper.
Fran Rodriguez
Fran Rodriguez, Staff Writer
Francisco Rodriguez is a freshman staff writer for The Blaze, and it is his first year on staff. He wanted to join the school newspaper because he saw a particular interest in the class and likes reading about current events as well as keeping up with the news. Although temporarily injured, Francisco loves playing soccer, being with his family and friends, relaxing on his phone, and listening to music in his free time. If he could ever give himself advice, he would tell himself to talk more and to ask more questions to help him grow.

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